The Weekly Wonk: NY 128th Assembly District

Welcome to the #weeklywonk. This is my weekly blog about statistics, registration data, and election law on my website, This is a rebrand of my #wonkywednesday and #sundaythoughts columns I have been writing since 2020. In merging these two side projects together I am hoping to be a little more regular in my production. I have also not tied myself to a particular day to release these columns, hoping to release them weekly on the weekend, so I can have more time to gather the statistics and resources that I want to devote to these articles. This week I return to our General Election registration previews with NY Assembly District 128.

#AD128 has a portion of the City of Syracuse, mainly the eastside and center city election neighborhoods. It also has the entire towns of Dewitt, Onondaga, and Salina. Assemblywoman Pam Hunter (D) has represented the 128th since winning a special election to assume the vacant seat in 2015. Before her it was represented by Sam Roberts (D) who is running for congress this year. Before 2012’s redistricting this seat was pretty much the same and represented by Joan Christensen (D).

A quick look at the registration of this district and we can see it has all the hallmarks of a safe Democratic seat. Democrats have the large plurality of registration at 45% and the GOP has 22%. Less than half the Democratic registration. Non-enrolled is significantly higher than the GOP and in second place at 27%. In terms of Geography this seat is almost equally split among its four distinct regions. Syracuse has 30%. Salina 27%, Dewitt 22% & Onondaga 21%.

Though this seat is actually only more than a ¼ inside the City of Syracuse, it is a solid Democrat seat. We can see why in this breakdown. Dewitt and Salina are two of the more solid Democratic towns in terms of enrollment. Onondaga has recently started to swing the Democrats as well with a slight Democratic plurality. Of course, Syracuse’s huge Democratic registration edge is what pushes this seat from Lean D territory to Overwhelmingly Safe D.

This seat is essentially unchanged from the 2012 version with only minor changes around the edges. Thus, the party enrollment looks over time remains an accurate assessment of how the enrollments have shifted over time. Democrats have gained 2467 voters since the creation of this district in 2012. The GOP have lost 2080 voters over that same time period. The Non-enrolled is the biggest mover gaining 3,260 voters. The growth of Democrats and non-enrolled paired with the significant losses of GOP voters makes this seat non-competitive outside of a major unseen circumstance.

We also see this in performance of this district. President Biden won the vote in this district by +34.05 in 2020. Dana Balter won the Congressional vote in this district by +14.19 despite losing the race in 2020. Andrew Cuomo performed very well in his Gubernatorial race with +21.07 in 2018. The Current representative, Pam Hunter, easily won her re-election bid in 2020 by +30.11. She was unopposed in 2018. Democrats outperform their countywide results, especially in federal elections.

Next week I will continue my review of the races on the ballot for the General election. Next up I look at the 127th Assembly District held by Al Stirpe. I plan to look at each race on the General election ballot leading up to November. Remember to subscribe to to get all election news and content updates.

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